Wolf Rayet Star inside The Eta Carina Nebula

Brand: Space Art and Cosmotography by Ray Palmer
Product Code: Wolf Rayet Star inside The Eta Carina Nebula
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Wolf Rayet Star inside The Eta Carina Nebula

The photo is of the central star inside the Eta Carina Nebula. The star is known as a Wolf-Rayet; an extremely violent star with luminosity of about 4 million of our suns. 

Even though we cannot see this particular star in question, we can see the spherical (bubble) shape that the immense solar winds from the Wolf-Rayet are causing. This star, buried deep within the nebula is inflating the gas around it like a balloon. 

The energy of the Wolf-Rayet can be seen, not just by the spherical inflation, but if you look closely, you'll see that the Wolf-Rayet has already punctured a hole in the lower right of the bubble, causing light to scream out toward the bottom of the photo, just like a search light. Again, the luminosity is estimated at 4 million times that of the sun. 

Taking into account that this object is approximately 7000 light years away, the size of the bubble like shape easily pays tribute to the power of this Wolf-Rayet. 

Pretty much smack bang in the centre of the photo, just above the bubble, is a Bok Globule. Our solar system could easily fit inside that, which again shows the power of this Wolf-Rayet. Bok Globules like the one shown collapse under gravity forming new stars and new planets. 

The Wolf-Rayet star is predicted to go Supernova, or even Hypernova within the next few thousand years. If we lived within a few dozen lights years of that star, the Gamma Ray Burst would cause a mass extinction event here on Earth, easily. 

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